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Blumenauer and Burgess on the Future of Transportation

7 years ago17 views



Our Mix panelists, Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Michael Burgess (R-TX), discuss whether alternative fuel vehicles and increased use of mass transit will have an effect on volatile gasoline prices.

Both lawmakers agree that supply issues are the key to high gas prices, saying that as long as there is a finite supply of crude oil in the world, the price of that oil -- and gasoline -- will continue to rise.

Burgess believes that new technology, including the development of natural gas, could hold they key to reversing that trend. He also believes more choices in public transportation would be helpful. But he does not believe electric vehicles will be helpful, calling them "golf carts." He says Americans who use them are trading a vehicle that relies on burning gasoline to one that relies on coal burned for electricity. He also says Texans can't go anywhere in a car that has a range of 100 miles or less.

Blumenauer says as long as Americans are held hostage to the pump, as long as they consume more gasoline than anyone else in the world, then they will continue to be vulnerable to swings in the price of oil. He believes the technology that can help the U.S. produce more oil comes with its own risks and drawbacks. But he disagrees that electric vehicles are worthless. He says electricity can be made form other sources besides coal, and there are plenty of places, even in Texas, where drivers can get where they need to go in less than 100 miles.

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